The Armenian National Committee of America—Burbank (ANCA-B) has issued its endorsements for City Council, Board of Education, City Clerk and Measure S— a school bond, for the upcoming all-mail elections and separate March 5 election for the bond.
“We are proud to continue our two decades of participation in Burbank’s elections. It is part of our efforts to integrate the growing Armenian community in town with all other parts of Burbank’s polity”, said Gaidzag Shahbazian, Electoral/Political Chair.
For City Council Bob Frutos, David Gordon, and Jess Talamantes are endorsed in the February 26 Primary election. A total of six candidates are vying for three seats on the Council.
Dr. David Gordon, an optometrist, is a seven-year incumbent and was endorsed by the ANCA four years ago when he ran for reelection as. He has been the strongest, on the current city Council, in supporting issues of concern to the Burbank Armenian community.
Jess Talamantes, a retired firefighter, lifelong Burbank resident, and incumbent, has also been helpful when the community needed matters addressed, and actively reached out seeking the community’s support.
Bob Frutos, a law enforcement professional who has served on Los Angeles’ bomb squad, has worked with Armenian community members on issues of concern. He was endorsed by the ANCA two years ago when he first ran, and failed to get elected by a slim margin.
Larry Applebaum and Armond Aghkhanian are endorsed in the Board of Education race. A total of five candidates are vying for two seats on the Board.
Larry Applebaum is a two term incumbent, a former pharmacist, builder, and electronics businessman who has earned the ANCA’s endorsement every time he has run. He has been helpful countless times to the Armenian community, particularly when Homenetmen has needed facilities for its athletes to use.
Armond Aghkhanian is himself an ANCA activist, educator, and has long been politically active. He brings the passion of a recent father who wants great schools for his child and will serve as a strong voice for the Armenian community’s needs.
Zizette Mullins is endorsed for City Clerk. A contested election for City Clerk does not often occur. This time there are three candidates, since the previous Clerk retired several months ago. In short time she has served, the appointed incumbent, Mullins, demonstrated that she is supportive of our minority community’s needs through her helpfulness. This is a carryover of her actions from when she served in the Glendale City Manager’s office.
For all these positions— City Council, Board of Education, and City Clerk —the endorsed candidates might get elected outright, or, depending on the vote tallies, move on to the April 9 General election.
Measure S, a proposed bond to pay for Burbank schools’ modernization is also being endorsed, though it will be on the March 5 ballot. Because of a legal quirk, Measure S will be voted on during a separate, regularly scheduled election on March 5, when Burbank residents will vote for Los Angeles Community College Board members. This election is a traditional, polling place election.
Measure S is a proposal that will help bring the best of modern technology, whether in the form of computer systems or solar panels, to Burbank’s schools. By doing this, it will reduce some the operating costs, allowing funds to be allocated to other pressing needs. All this will come at a cost of just over a dollar and a half per month for the average Burbank homeowner over the next 25 years.
“As a parent, I’m proud that we’re endorsing two strong candidates for our School Board and supporting an important bond measure that will improve conditions for all Burbank students. This continues our tradition of supporting matters important to Burbank, much as we did with Measure L in 2003 to support our libraries,” said Zareh Khachatourian, ANCA Burbank activist.